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The Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) has raised almost $1.5bn by selling down its stake in Shell and BG in recent weeks. QIA sold $840mn-worth of BG shares and a $643mn Shell stake, according to Qatar’s Al-Sharq newspaper.
The sell-off comes as Shell pushes through a $70bn takeover of BG but can most readily be interpreted as ‘business as usual’ for QIA, as it manages its huge portfolio. QIA controls investments of over $250bn and recently revealed a plan to invest $35bn in the US over the next five years in a bid to further diversify.
QIA was expected to see losses of up to $12bn in total from eight of its top 10 holdings during the third quarter, according to FT. Exposure to Volkswagen ($8.4bn), Glencore ($2.7bn) and Agricultural Bank of China ($650mn) is reportedly a factor behind QIA’s US move. The normally reticent QIA says that with world economies, markets and currencies moving in different cycles and rhythms, a globally diversified portfolio is crucial.
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